Kevin Spencer

Educational Background

PhD in English (Duke University, 2022); MA in Theory and Criticism (Western University, 2009); MA in English (University of Alberta, 2004); BA [honors] (University of Alberta, 2002).


I work in the emerging field of fiction and philosophy. I am particularly interested in the origins and legacy of existentialism (a literary-philosophical movement that flourished in the 1940s), the realist novel, and the ethics of fiction. I have lived and taught in Canada (my home country), South Korea, and the USA.

Research interests

  • existentialist literature and philosophy
  • the realism/modernism debate
  • the 1940s and ‘50s
  • the ethics of fiction, particularly the ethics of agency
  • literary theory

Publications/scholarly and creative work

Existential Realism: Reading American Novels the French Way.” Contemporary Literature Vol. 62, no. 4, Winter 2021


  • World Literature
  • Literary Criticism
  • Contemporary Literature
  • 20th Century fiction
  • Aspects of the Novel